Nirdhan Utthan is a pioneer microfinance institution involved in extending financial services to low income group in Nepal.
Nirdhan Utthan, “the Laghubitta Bittiya Sanstha for upliftment of the poor” is a micro-finance established in November 1998 under Company Act of Nepal 1997 (now Company Act 2006). Nepal Rastra Bank, the Central Bank of Nepal, granted a license in April 1999 to undertake banking activities under the Development Bank Act 1996. It started its formal operation from July 1999. Now, operated under Bank and Financial Institutions Act 2017, Nirdhan Utthan provides micro-finance services such as Loans, Deposits, Micro-Insurance and Remittance services to low income families of Nepal. NULBSL follows group lending based on Grameen Bank, Bangladesh model as well as group lending based on NULBSL developed Self-Reliant Group model through a network of 181 branch offices spread over all 77 districts of Nepal.
Though, legally established as a company in 1998, the operation of NULBSL is a continuation of micro-finance services provided by NIRDHAN NGO which was providing micro-finance services since March 1993. The story behind the establishment of “NIRDHAN” starts from 1986 when Late Dr. Harihar Dev Pant, then senior officer with the Central Bank of Nepal visited Grameen Bank in Bangladesh. This visit inspired him to launch micro-finance program in Nepal resulting the birth of “NIRDHAN” or “People Without Money” in 1991. NIRDHAN began its micro-finance operations in March 1993.
NIRDHAN, as an NGO had limited resources and capacity to satisfy unmet demand of poor people in different parts of the country. As a result, NULBSL was established and started the operations under then Development Bank Act 1996. In July 1999, NIRDHAN transferred all micro-finance operations to NULBSL. Strategic reasons for promoting NULBSL are:
Apart from Financial Services Nirdhan also offers non financial services to its members. The non-financial activities undertaken by Nirdhan are Financial Literacy Training, Skill Development Training, Entrepreneurship Development Training, Center Chief Workshops, Guardian Workshops and financial support for Critical Illness among member’s household, maternity support for members, financial support during natural calamities and scholarship for member’s children.
The vision of Nirdhan Utthan is to be a MFI with a social conscience that enables poor to contribute equally to a prosperous, self-reliant rural society through self-employment and social awareness, and help to reduce poverty in Nepal.
The mission of Nirdhan Utthan is to extend financial services and social awareness to the poor in under-served and un-served areas of Nepal in a sustainable manner.
The primary goals of Nirdhan Utthan are to:
NULBSL, being a national level microfinance institution, can operate all over the country. Currently, it has covered all 77 districts of Nepal through 181 Branch Offices, 10 Regional Offices and 1 Central Office. Out of 753 Local Bodies, it has reached more than 527 Local Bodies spread over plain Terai, Hill & Mountain regions of Nepal.
The Board of Directors (BoD) of Nirdhan Utthan comprises six members, one representing individual promoters, two representing institutional promoters, two representing general public and one independent director. The BoD meets at least 12 times a year and takes policy decisions to pursue the objectives of the institute. The Chairperson of the Board is elected by the board members among themselves. The BoD is responsible to the general meeting of shareholders who meet generally once a year in Annual General Meeting (AGM). The composition of BoD is as follows:
Director, Representing Promoter Shareholders
Director, Representing Public Shareholders
Director, Representing Public Shareholders
Director, Representing Everest Bank Ltd.
Director, Representing Himalayan Bank Ltd.
Nirdhan Utthan is headed by Chief Executive Officer (CEO) who works as Executive Chief of the institute. The CEO sets vision and strategies and reviews operations carefully. The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) supervises the departmental activities and works in closely with Assistant General Manager. NULBSL has nine departments at its Central Office, which includes: Human Resources Management Department, General Administration Department, Operation Department, Internal Audit Department, Planning, Monitoring and Research Department, Accounts and Fund Management Department, Training and Development Department, Information and Technology Department and Loan Recovery Department. The executives are as follows:
Assistant General Manager
Company Secretary, Account & Fund Management Department
Planning, Monitoring & Research and Operation Department
Human Resource Management and Information Technology Department
Internal Audit Department
Act. Chief Manager
Loan/Recovery Department & General Services Department
Training, Entrepreneurship Promotion & Development Department
Nirdhan Utthan recruits new clients who fit the following targeting criteria for its group based financial services:
Nirdhan Utthan has established strategic alliances with the following international and national organizations:
Currently, Nirdhan Utthan is working together with following national and international organizations:
The authorized capital of Nirdhan Utthan is Rs. 2 Billion. As of January, 2020 the paid-up capital is Rs. 1.5 Billion. The distribution of shares is as follows:
|Shareholders||Amount||% of Total paid-up Equity|
|NIRDHAN (The mother NGO)||244,826,900||20.40%|
|Himalayan Bank Limited (A Commercial Bank)|| 134,679,100 ||11.22%|
|Nabil Bank Limited (A Commercial Bank)|| 166,140,300 ||13.85%|
|Everest Bank Limited (A Commercial Bank)|| 134,679,100 ||11.22%|
|Grameen Trust Bangladesh|| 18,664,000 ||1.56%|
|Private Sector Individuals||94,111,200||7.84%|
|International Finance Corporation (IFC)||90,523,200||7.54%|
|Nepal Life Insurance Company Limited|| 24,000,000 ||2.00%|
|General public including clients and staffs||292,376,200||24.37%|
The NIRDHAN, Himalayan Bank Limited, Nabil Bank Limited, Everest Bank Limited, Grameen Trust Bangladesh, Nepal Life Insurance Company Limited and private sector individuals are promoters of NULBSL. 51% shareholding of the institute is owned by the Promoter Shareholders while 49% is owned by Public Shareholders.
The source of fund of Nirdhan Utthan is shareholder’s equity, client saving and deposit and borrowing from commercial banks and financial institutions.
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Nirdhan Brochure (Nepali)
Nirdhan Brochure (English)
Former Chairman Former CEO